While our apprentices are not generally an at-risk population for serious health concerns due to COVID-19, community spread of the outbreak is something we can all do our part in fighting. CareerWise relies on its education and employer partners to follow the guidance of qualified public health professionals and government officials to keep students, employees and their families safe. Many of our schools—yours is likely one of them—have already announced closures to facilitate social distancing and stem the spread of the outbreak.

At this time, CareerWise Colorado is making plans to transition the hiring event scheduled for April 7th to virtual interviews scheduled by our employer partners.. We will be working with partners and applicants to provide training, facilitation and technology as needed to ensure as many quality hires as possible this spring.

As more school closures and work-from-home policies seem likely in the days and weeks to come, we’ve created a web resource for apprentices navigating the shifting landscape of work and school due to the outbreak that can be found here.

And, while the employment agreement between businesses and apprentices isn’t affected by a school closure, we’ve encouraged apprentices to consult with a parent/trusted adult to make the decision about going to work that is best for their family in the event of a closure. We’ve also encouraged employers to honor those decisions and provide work-from-home options or authorize leave until the outbreak subsides.

The impact of COVID-19 on employers’ industries is beginning to affect their ability to hire apprentices this spring. As of today, two of our employer partners in the hospitality and travel industries have scaled back positions on the Hiring Hub, removing some of the jobs that were previously posted. We’ve communicated with students that had open applications for those positions to let them know about the change and encouraged them to look at similar positions in their area.

CareerWise is providing employers additional support in navigating the hiring cycle this spring to maximize apprentice placements, while also accommodating hiring into the summer months and our fall cycle as necessary.

The health of our community is important to us; as the situation evolves, we will continue to respond accordingly with the most current guidance of health officials and keep you informed of any updates.

You can reach your usual contact at CareerWise with any questions, or you can contact Ginny Reece, CareerWise director of K12 partnerships at ginny.reece@careerwisecolorado.org or (720) 364-8969.